G14 2017-18: Oilers at Islanders

Kailer Yamamoto is back in Spokane and ready to punish WHL goalies for the rest of the winter. Back at base, Todd McLellan has two issues on the starboard:

  • Leon Draisaitl, a center, remains the top RW option.
  • Kailer Yamamoto, the other skill RW of choice through 13 games, is back in junior.

Who you gonna call? I refer you to my original estimates back in summer, during the RE series. The predictions do a good job of reflecting uncertainty, something we are still dealing with to this day.

ORIGINAL RE PROJECTIONS

I have Jesse Puljujarvi (14 goals), Anton Slepyshev and Drake Caggiula (12 goals) plus Zack Kassian (11 goals) all in the mix, along with Ryan Strome playing mirror man with Leon Draisaitl on 97’s line. I didn’t have Kailer Yamamoto among my projections, so the entire process has been delayed until now.

The reason I bring these numbers back is to bring some flavor to this RW discussion. Peter Chiarelli wants an internal solution, and Todd McLellan has been telling him the teenager wunderkind Yamamoto is a better option than the others. Now what?

Exactly.

PIKES PEAK, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in November 2015: 1-2-0, goal differential -1
  • Oilers in November 2016: 1-1-1, goal differential -3
  • Oilers in November 2017: 1-2-0, goal differential -2

Game four in November 2015 was a 4-3 overtime win over the Anaheim Ducks (Teddy Purcell!) and 2016 was a 2-1 win over Detroit. The Oilers could use a Teddy Purcell about now and a win wouldn’t go amiss either.

AFTER 13, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers 15-16: 5-8-0, goal differential -5
  • Oilers 16-17: 9-3-1, goal differential +8
  • Oilers 17-18: 4-8-1, goal differential -13

Game 14 in 2015-16 was a 2-1 loss to Pittsburgh (Daniel Spring, Phil Kessel) and Game 14 in 2016-17 was a 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh, who scored twice (Malkin, Sheary) in the third period to pull away from the Oilers. If the Oilers win tonight in Brooklyn, the current edition of the team will pull ahead of the 2015-16 group by one point.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM NOVEMBER

  • At home to: Pittsburgh, New Jersey, Detroit (Expected: 2-1-0) (Actual 1-2-0)
  • On the road to: NYI, New Jersey, NYR, Washington (Expected: 1-2-1) (Actual: 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Vegas, St. Louis (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual: 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Dallas, St. Louis, Detroit, Buffalo, Boston (Expected 2-2-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Arizona, Toronto (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 7-7-2, 16 points in 16 games 
  • Current results: 1-2-0, two points in three games

This is a vital portion of the season. If Edmonton grabs three wins on the road trip, we can talk about climbing back from the abyss. A winless trip? Game over, man. Game over. If Edmonton returns from Washington 4-12-1, we’ll be talking draft. No way to avoid it. In order to finish at my projected record, the Oilers need to go 6-5-2 through the rest of this month.

WHERE ARE YOU, CHUCK LEFLEY?

Chuck Lefley was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in 1970 (No. 6 overall) and began the gigantic task of moving up the Habs depth chart. He played in one NHL game in 1970-71, a season in which the pro depth chart (Montreal Canadiens: Frank Mahovlich, Marc Tardif, John Ferguson; Montreal Voyageurs: Germain Gagnon, Chuck Lefley, John French) actual showed some signs of age. Sam Pollock grabbed Yvon Lambert from Detroit for nothing in 1971, then added draft picks Murray Wilson (1971), Steve Shutt (1972) and Bob Gainey (1973).

Long story short, Lefley had about five years in the organization and was going to get run over by Shutt, Lambert and Gainey, but he made himself useful in his time with the Habs. Lefley was a big winger who could score and check, so could  slide in on the checking line or move up with Jacques Lemaire and Yvan Cournoyer. That’s what the Oilers need now, today. Anton Slepyshev has the size and speed but (like all of the hopefuls) nothing about his bat screams heart of the order.

And that, for me, is the major issue here. In the comments section of today’s blog, you will see chapter and verse about the need to move Leon Draisaitl to center. Who will replace him on the top line? I think the answer, based on Todd McLellan’s handling of each man, is probably Drake Caggiula.

CAGGIULA MINUTES

Jonathan Willis has an excellent article at The Athletic today about optimal line combinations, worthwhile read. One of the problems I see for Todd McLellan is all of the “extra” players added to the pairs (Maroon-McDavid, et cetera) are pretty shy offensively. Here are the career 5×5/60 numbers for the youngsters in play:

  • Ryan Strome 1.55 (as an Oiler)
  • Jesse Puljujarvi 1.45
  • Zack Kassian 1.42 (as an Oiler)
  • Anton Slepyshev 1.15
  • Drake Caggiula 1.07
  • Kailer Yamamoto 0.52

Peter Chiarelli is asking Todd McLellan to find at least one offensive winger from this group in 2017-18. Who you gonna call? Exactly. Some of these players have played with Connor McDavid, others not so much. That certainly makes a difference and one suspects Todd McLellan is contemplating all manner of moves for tonight’s game.

POSSIBLE LINES

  • Patrick Maroon—Connor McDavid—Leon Draisaitl
  • Milan Lucic—Ryan Nugent-Hopkins—Drake Caggiula
  • Jussi Jokinen—Ryan Strome—Anton Slepyshev
  • Iiro Pakarinen—Mark Letestu—Zack Kassian
  • Darnell Nurse—Adam Larsson
  • Oscar Klefbom—Matt Benning
  • Kris Russell—Eric Gryba
  • Cam Talbot (Laurent Brossoit)

The Oilers have four men over 2.00/60 at 5×5, plus Milan Lucic at 1.84. Who you gonna call for that sixth slot? It’s a bitch.

WHAT’S WRONG?

  • Connor McDavid:  “It doesn’t matter what other people think, or the media or the fans think, it matters how we feel in here.” Source

I am breaking my 24-hour rule to print this quote from a Rob Tychkowski article over at the Edmonton Sun, so badly need you to click on the link and then read it (it’s only fair). Other good stuff in there too from the coach and Nuge. There’s some iron in those words, the young captain appears to be setting his jaw and saying to hell with this noise. I’ve noticed things have a way of happening when this occurs. Good sign.

WHAT’S WRONG?

Oh. Well if you put it that way! No doubt in my mind the Oilers should regress on the shooting percentage side, and Talbot has been a road warrior (.925 save percentage) this season. However, regression doesn’t respond to a timer, and the Oilers have backed themselves into a corner. They have to win games this week.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, a full boat of guests and a lot to discuss. TSN1260, scheduled to appear:

  • Jonathan Willis, The Athletic. How best to proceed with the Oilers lines.
  • Guy Flaming, The Pipeline Show. How did the Avs do in that big trade, plus the WHL убитый touring Russian team.
  • Scott Cullen, TSN. A big week for the Oilers, CFL playoffs Week One.
  • Eric Fawcett, Press Basketball. The Celtics are an early story and we’ll check in on the Raptors.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!

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350 Responses to "G14 2017-18: Oilers at Islanders"

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  1. Jethro Tull says:

    NO. SLEEP. TILL. BROOKLYN!

  2. Jethro Tull says:

    Of all the glaring deficiencies of this team, i think the lack of any secondary scoring is the worst.

    I have a theory: Hockey is usually a game of mistakes. If you can outscore them, you win. What can you do to help? Minimise your mistakes. Sure. But if you still don’t try to outscore them, you’re still sunk.

    What i see with this team? Afraid to play. “Our penalty kill is no good. Don’t take penalties.” Right there means you are now afraid to play. Looch, Maroon and Kass all play best with that edge. Without it, i don’t think we can outscore our mistakes.

  3. zatch says:

    Willis’s article was fantastic. Can’t speak highly enough about it. As you noted LT, the issue with the Top-9 pairs system for Edmonton today is the wings are anemic. To use the example from his article, even Maroon needs to be the Handzus, not the Patrick Sharp.

    The issue here is, no matter what you think of PC, he has left Edmonton is a position where tradeable assets are dear. Edmonton needs wingers, they likely can’t afford to pay term and money to veterans (who are declining anyway) at FA as PC has shown he loves to do.

    Bluntly, I think if Edmonton wants to be a contender, 2 of the following will need to be moved: 2018 1st, 2019 1st, Caleb Jones, Ethan Bear, Ostap Safin, Sleppy.

    I also truly believe one of Nurse, Yamo or Puj need to be gone too. This team needs established scoring wingers and needs them badly.

  4. Clay says:

    I thought part of the Strome experiment was at least giving him a shot with McD? Seems to me it hasn’t happened much (I’d check the wowys but our work network filters those sites out mostly – shocked LT’s blog comes up).

    It’s easy to say he hasn’t earned it, but outside of McD, Drai, Larsson, RNH, Nurse, and Maroon, no one’s earned jack shit to this point. Give it a shot – what’s the worst that could happen?

    Also – the bottom 6 scoring for the fLames is eerily similar to the Oilers right now – but Smith is pitching a .931, and their defense is scoring a ton. Goaltending, though. It’s a thing.

  5. Lowetide says:

    Zatch: I don’t think these wingers will have a massive cost attached to them. Seriously. The hurdle is Chiarelli’s belief there are skill wingers on the roster. Can Slepy score 20? Caggiula? I think he’s going to commit a lot of this season to find out, while the coach is already (imo) convinced.

  6. Jaxon says:

    I hope the Oilers have sent Yamamoto packing with videos of similar small players who have had success recently like Alex Debrincat, Conor Sheary, Johnny Gaudreau, Brayden Point, Jonathan Marchessault, and Clayton Keller. They should also get him on a training regime this season and next summer that similar small players used to bulk up like David Desharnais, Conor Sheary, Mats Zuccarello, Cam Atkinson, Tyler Johnson (who he knows), Nic Petan, Brad Marchand, and Brendan Gallagher. They all tip the scales in the 180lbs range and are 5’7″ to 5’9″ tall. Not that all small players need to bulk up that much, but I’m sure it helps. Gaudreau us still only 157lbs, Debrincat is 165lbs, Sheary is 175lbs, Point is 166lbs, Keller is 168lbsEnnis is 161lbs, Gourde is 172lbs and Marchessault is 174lbs. Hope he ends up traded to the Regina Pats, too.

  7. Jaxon says:

    I think Slepyshev is a textbook example of a talented youngster who has been mishandled for most of his early career.

    I think Slepyshev may have deceivingly high offensive potential and I think MacLellan and co. see that, hence the occasional trip up the lineup to a top 6 role. When he was younger, he was always playing against older players in league play.

    For instance, as a 15 year old he was the only player his age in the adult Russia3 League and he scored .54 pts/gp. At 15 years old in a league with some players over 40! Then when he went to World Juniors he was named Captain of the Under-18 team and led the team in scoring. He was also named captain of the Under-20 team and was 2nd in team scoring. He was the 1st overall KHL pick in 2011, 2 weeks after his 17th birthday, so he was also one of the youngest players in the draft. Russians drafted after him: Grigorenko, Namestnikov, Vasilevsky.

    He should have been dominating players his own age so he could stay creative, instead, he was playing against pros with 20 years experience at 15 years old. And he hasn’t really been given a chance to dominate unless as a captain for a World Junior team, where he did lead team Russia in scoring, but playing against the best in the world in your age group isn’t exactly an opportunity to freewheel either. He did have a great streak in his last few months of KHL before coming to North America. He finished his KHL career with a run of 16pts in his 25 games, which, if you use the NHL equivalency of 80% of retained points from the KHL to the NHL it works out to a 42 pt pace over 82 games, which is pretty good offence. For example, Draisaitl’s final WHL season for Kelowna after spending part of the season in the NHL worked out to 37 pts over 82 games NHL equivalency. McDavid’s final junior season worked out to 67 points.

    Anyhow, I feel for Slepyshev. Because of his talent, he’s always been pushed to a higher level where it must have been hard to be creative and flourish. Hopefully, he is catching up and the game is slowing down for him.

  8. Jethro Tull says:

    Jaxon,

    Aim higher. Martin St. Louis and Danny Briere.

  9. dustrock says:

    As Young Willis pointed out, T-Mac’s adjustments in moving down Draisaitl in the playoffs made a huge difference.

    I am very surprised he hasn’t tried that more this year. I get the idea of Unlimited Power on the first line is tempting, but if they are shut down, a la Detroit, doesn’t help the rest of the team.

    Jethro – totally agree about not playing with confidence.

  10. jake70 says:

    4 consecutive games in eastern time zone. Sweet. Don’t usually partake on school nights but may have to pick up a few Moosehead for the week.

    Oh LT, this is from a 2013 article by you…. “Petrell is a terrific penalty killer ” Maybe we should bring him back?? 😉

  11. Pouzar says:

    Jaxon:
    I think Slepyshev is a textbook example of a talented youngster who has been mishandled for most of his early career.

    I think Slepyshev may have deceivingly high offensive potential and I think MacLellan and co. see that, hence the occasional trip up the lineup to a top 6 role. When he was younger, he was always playing against older players in league play.

    For instance, as a 15 year old he was the only player his age in the adult Russia3 League and he scored .54 pts/gp. At 15 years old in a league with some players over 40! Then when he went to World Juniors he was named Captain of the Under-18 team and led the team in scoring. He was also named captain of the Under-20 team and was 2nd in team scoring. He was the 1st overall KHL pick in 2011, 2 weeks after his 17th birthday, so he was also one of the youngest players in the draft. Russians drafted after him: Grigorenko, Namestnikov, Vasilevsky.

    He should have been dominating players his own age so he could stay creative, instead, he was playing against pros with 20 years experience at 15 years old. And he hasn’t really been given a chance to dominate unless as a captain for a World Junior team, where he did lead team Russia in scoring, but playing against the best in the world in your age group isn’t exactly an opportunity to freewheel either. He did have a great streak in his last few months of KHL before coming to North America. He finished his KHL career with a run of 16pts in his 25 games, which, if you use the NHL equivalency of 80% of retained points from the KHL to the NHL it works out to a 42 pt pace over 82 games, which is pretty good offence. For example, Draisaitl’s final WHL season for Kelowna after spending part of the season in the NHL worked out to 37 pts over 82 games NHL equivalency. McDavid’s final junior season worked out to 67 points.

    Anyhow, I feel for Slepyshev. Because of his talent, he’s always been pushed to a higher level where it must have been hard to be creative and flourish. Hopefully, he is catching up and the game is slowing down for him.

    Very interesting take. Great post. Dude was a projected 1st rd talent who slipped due to signability issues.

  12. Pouzar says:

    jake70: Don’t usually partake on school nights

    Cut this out for the last 4 weeks. Feel Great!

    Time for me to grow up me thinks. 🙂

  13. Jaxon says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Jaxon,

    Aim higher. Martin St. Louis and Danny Briere.

    Sure. Absolutely. More info is good. No reason to stop at current players. Although, today’s game has changed a bit (they both peaked around 2006-2007) and fitness and nutrition systems are more advanced, even compared to just 5 years ago. And I would guess Mats Zuccarello can pass along everything he learned from St. Louis. Gaudreau is aiming pretty high (10th in scoring, and 6th overall 2 years ago), Keller (a rookie) is 14th, and Point (a sophomore) is 20th. Not bad.

  14. zatch says:

    Lowetide,

    That’s fair LT. My biggest worry is PC will do with Nuge what he did with Ebs and Hall, badly lose a trade for a 3rd line winger. Although perhaps the almost universal scorn and jeering he’s received after the 3-way blockbuster trade might make him think twice.

    As for the price, it depends on who you are targeting. I strong believe that Edmonton needs an Eberle tier winger just to start.

  15. who says:

    zatch:
    Willis’s article was fantastic. Can’t speak highly enough about it. As you noted LT, the issue with the Top-9 pairs system for Edmonton today is the wings are anemic. To use the example from his article, even Maroon needs to be the Handzus, not the Patrick Sharp.

    The issue here is, no matter what you think of PC, he has left Edmonton is a position where tradeable assets are dear. Edmonton needs wingers, they likely can’t afford to pay term and money to veterans (who are declining anyway) at FA as PC has shown he loves to do.

    Bluntly, I think if Edmonton wants to be a contender, 2 of the following will need to be moved: 2018 1st, 2019 1st, Caleb Jones, Ethan Bear, Ostap Safin, Sleppy.

    I also truly believe one of Nurse, Yamo or Puj need to be gone too. This team needs established scoring wingers and needs them badly.

    Or how about we wait 2 years and let the players you want to trade fill those holes.
    The entire core of this roster will still be under contract at that time. If you sell off any more young talent for veteran fixes you are setting this team up for long term pain.
    I think the issue that is rearing it’s ugly head right now is the complete lack of complimentary players in the 20 to 25 year age range. Sure we have our first rounders, and most of them turned out, but other than Slepyshev, there is nothing else left. And Chia compounded this problem with the Reinhart trade, although he did add Caggiula and Benning as college free agents.
    Trading more prospects for veteran help doesn’t seem like the right move here.

  16. zatch says:

    who,

    Why the hell should we be waiting two years in the hopes our magic beans (no matter how good the pedigree on them) sprout? If they don’t work out, what then? Wait ANOTHER two years? Three if we’re being serious.

    I’m not suggesting more Eberle for Strome’s, or sending of Pu for an aging Alex Steen but management needs to be serious about upgrading with more established players, and be savvy while they do it.

  17. godot10 says:

    Like Eakins wasted all training camp playing Tkachev, a non-option realistically, McLellan wasted all training camp and over 10% of the season on a non-option in Yamamoto, instead of figuring out how to deploy his real actual options at RW. Yamamoto, realistically, is a full AHL season away from the NHL.

    Now the OIlers are well into the season, and McLellan hasn’t a clue what to do about RW, having wasted training camp and 10 regular season games.

  18. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    – Great post LT! If you take things said at face value, it is an interesting time

    – Chia has said he prefers Drai at C, as well as Strome. Strome for last few games has been a C

    – McL has said that Kailer has been one of his quicker wingers: now Chia took him away

    – The dynamic is fascination. Again if you believe Chia, he wants to see how Sleppy and Caggs can do as wingers for McD and Drai, while McL trusts Drai and McD together

    – Poor RNH: McL plays him as 2nd C, but if he has to play all McD, Drai and Strome at C…

  19. godot10 says:

    zatch:
    Willis’s article was fantastic. Can’t speak highly enough about it. As you noted LT, the issue with the Top-9 pairs system for Edmonton today is the wings are anemic. To use the example from his article, even Maroon needs to be the Handzus, not the Patrick Sharp.

    The issue here is, no matter what you think of PC, he has left Edmonton is a position where tradeable assets are dear. Edmonton needs wingers, they likely can’t afford to pay term and money to veterans (who are declining anyway) at FA as PC has shown he loves to do.

    Bluntly, I think if Edmonton wants to be a contender, 2 of the following will need to be moved: 2018 1st, 2019 1st, Caleb Jones, Ethan Bear, Ostap Safin, Sleppy.

    I also truly believe one of Nurse, Yamo or Puj need to be gone too. This team needs established scoring wingers and needs them badly.

    Pittsburgh gets away with cheap inexperienced wingers…two cups won that way. And with an NHL defense that is not highly regarded on an individual basis.

    Chiarelli is overpaying Lucic forever, and Letestu and Kassian are earning two time what 4th liners should be earning…Kassian…who will be a 100% overpaid 4th liner for three full years.

    Lucic has to go to the third line and create a mismatch there.

    Construct two pairs for the first two lines out of McDavid, Draisaitl, Nugent-Hopkins, and Maroon. Fill with a cheap winger on each of the top two lines.

    There is room to break in Puljujarvi on this roster with Lucic and Strome on a third line, but the coach has to commit to it. That would be a difficult matchup for other teams.

  20. OriginalPouzar says:

    I fully expect McDavid to be the dominant player shift after shift that he was in the opening game against the flames – we’ve only seen that player sporadically since them.

    Anything less and I’ll be disappointed. Expectations for the Captain are high and I do expect more out of him and more consistency.

    Will be interesting to see if coach does move Leon to center (fanbase is screaming for it) – I doubt it.

    Hopefully Slep is back in tonight but I’m not optimistic about that one.

  21. godot10 says:

    godot10: Pittsburgh gets away with cheap inexperienced wingers…two cups won that way.And with an NHL defense that is not highly regarded on an individual basis.

    Chiarelli is overpaying Lucic forever, and Letestu and Kassian are earning two time what 4th liners should be earning…Kassian…who will be a 100% overpaid 4th liner for three full years.

    Lucic has to go to the third line and create a mismatch there.

    Construct two pairs for the first two lines out of McDavid, Draisaitl, Nugent-Hopkins, and Maroon.Fill with a cheap winger on each of the top two lines.

    There is room to break in Puljujarvi on this roster with Lucic and Strome on a third line, but the coach has to commit to it.That would be a difficult matchup for other teams.

    Say

    Maroon, McDavid, Slepyshev
    Caggiula, Nugent-Hopkins/Draisaitl
    Lucic, Strome, Puljujarvi
    Malone, Letestu, Kassian

    Nurse, Larsson
    Klefbom, Benning
    Sekera, Russell (when Sekera is back).

  22. OriginalPouzar says:

    Maroon-McDavid-Draisaitl
    Lucic-RNH-Slepyshev
    Jokinen-Strome-Caggiula
    Pakarinen-Letestu-Kassian
    Khaira-Malone

    Good to see Slep back in the lineup.

  23. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    NYI as been the classic “lower middling team” for years now. Since drafting Tavares they’ve mostly been bad (2010, 2011, 2012, 2014) or are *just* making the playoffs.

    They’ve made the playoffs 3 times in Tavares’ career and made it past the first round once. (15/16)

    Their drafting record wasn’t good for a long time, but got better recently.

    They got Tavares 1st overall in 2009. Good.

    They got Niedereitter 5th overall in 2010. Good. Pissed him away for Clutterbuck after dinking him around contractually wise. Bad.

    They got Nelson at 30th in 2010. Decent.

    They got Strome 5th overall in 2011. Meh.

    They got Mayfield at 34th in 2011. Coming along…..on NHL roster

    They got Reinhart at 4th in 2012. Poor.

    They got Pelech at 65 in 2012. Coming along…..on NHL roster

    They got Pulock at 15 in 2013. Coming along…..on NHL roster

    They got Dal Colle at 5th in 2014. Was tracking well and went off the rails a couple years ago. Still in system. Injury?

    They got Ho Sang at 28th in 2014. Has shown flashes but coaches keep sitting him. Currently in AHL.

    That’s a lot of high end picks with not much to show.

    The only player that really turned out besides Tavares was sold very, very low.

    Then,

    The 2015 draft is where Snow hit a homerun and a double (might upgrade to triple in a couple years) and he entered the draft without a pick until the 3rd.

    Somehow, someway, after Dougie Hamilton, a NHL regular RHD on a top pairing, got traded for a 1st, 2nd, 3rd Snow convinced EDM GM Chiarelli that AHL 2nd pairing LHD Reinhart was worth the same.

    He got picks 16 (Barzal) and 33.

    After taking Barzal he packaged 33 and 72 (his own 3rd) to move up to 28 and take Beauvillier

    Beauvillier made the team last year and is currently their 3C on a soft minute line with Nelson and Chimera.

    Barzal made the team this year and is currently their 2C playing with Ladd and Eberle.
    So far in 53 minutes together Barzal-Eberle are 62% CF and 80% GF (4-1)

    So Snow turned a Dman who couldn’t make his team and a middling high pick who was in the coach’s dog house (we know why now) into his 2C, 2RW and 3C.

    Top 6 NYI scorers:
    Name Pts
    John Tavares 18
    Joshua Bailey 18
    Anders Lee 15
    Mathew Barzal 13
    Jordan Eberle 11
    Nick Leddy 10

    Top 6 EDM scorers:
    Name Pts
    Connor McDavid 16
    Patrick Maroon 10
    Leon Draisaitl 9
    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 9
    Milan Lucic 6
    Ryan Strome 5

    I hope Snow sends Chiarelli a nice gift basket at Christmas.

    Also,

    NYI has two very good goalies in Halak and Greiss.

    Greiss is probably the most under rated goalie in the NHL over the last few years.

    Over the last 5 years (including this one) among goalies who have played at least 3000 minutes they rank 3rd and 15th.

    Player gsaa/100
    MATTHEW.MURRAY 1.093
    CAM.TALBOT 0.971
    JAROSLAV.HALAK 0.948
    CAREY.PRICE 0.940
    COREY.CRAWFORD 0.923
    JOHN.GIBSON 0.891
    HENRIK.LUNDQVIST 0.849
    CORY.SCHNEIDER 0.814
    SCOTT.DARLING 0.755
    SERGEI.BOBROVSKY 0.650
    ANDREW.HAMMOND 0.564
    JONATHAN.QUICK 0.556
    MARTIN.JONES 0.538
    BRADEN.HOLTBY 0.486
    THOMAS.GREISS 0.472
    ANTTI.RAANTA 0.440
    PHILIPP.GRUBAUER 0.433
    FREDERIK.ANDERSEN 0.405
    SEMYON.VARLAMOV 0.325
    BRIAN.ELLIOTT 0.303

    They picked up Halak in 14/15 and Greiss in 15/16.

    In typical Snow fashion he’s pissed off Halak a few times and even sent him to the AHL for a stint last year.

    This year Greiss is off to a poor start with -1.23 GSAA/100 but history tells us he’ll improve.

    Halak is off his norm as well, but still above water with a +0.020 GSAA/100 so basically is an average goalie so far this year.

    Don’t know who starts tonight.

    Also,

    NYI is currently 3rd in the brutal Metropolitan Division of Death with a 8-5-1 if you look at pts% and not standings points (and you should)

    They are tied with CBJ for the best goal differential in their division with a +8.

    They’re 5-0-1 at home and 3-5-1 on the road.

    Maybe the crappy ice and bizarre lighting at Barclay’s plays to their advantage?

    Oilers have shit the bed there almost every time they go.

    This is not going to be an easy game for EDM, mind you none are this year.

    One last thing,

    Running a 19 year old out in the top 6 to repeated miss the open looks he got may have hurt EDM more than the GM or coach thinks.

    I certainly do not blame Yamamoto for any of the losses but his effect on 97’s 5v5 goal production was clear. Maybe it was mostly variance but watching freshly drafted rookies being unable to score at the NHL level isn’t uncommon.

    This team rode 97’s production 5v5 GF% of 62%, a great 5v4 and Talbot’s goalering to a good record and the playoffs last year.

    This year:
    Oilers goal production and goal share with McDavid on with Yamamoto 1.94 GF/60 – 50%GF (2-2)
    Oilers goal product and goal share with McDavid on without Yamamoto 4.71 GF/60 – 58%GF (11-8)

    Interestingly 97’s on-ice 5v4 shot and goal production were identical with and without Yamamoto. The shots are off slightly and goals are off by half compared to last year either way though. They shouldn’t screw with the original 5v4 set up imo, they were doing good things.

    EDM was 2-2-0 with Yamamoto out of the line up and 2-6-1 with him in the line up.

    Again, it’s not nearly all or even partially on him, but it opens them up for criticism for sure.

    One day the Oilers won’t try to shoe horn a teenager into the line up.

    Man.

    Go Oilers!!!

    (*clap,clap*)

  24. zatch says:

    godot10,

    This is similar to my thinking, but I like running the three C’s.

    Maroon-McDavid- REAL TOP 6 SCORING RW
    ???-Draisaitl-???
    Lucic-Nuge-???
    whocares-whocares-whocares

    is sort of my skeleton, but looking forward to next year, as I do firmly believe this season is a write-off:

    Cheap Winger-McDavid-legit top 6 winger
    Cheap Winger/legit top 6 winger-Drai- Whatever you didn’t do on the LW
    Lucic-Nuge-cheap winger
    whocares-whocares-whocares

    The key here is Maroon either has to realize what he’s truly worth (not as much as his Boxcars say) or PC needs to have the balls to walk away from a bad contract. Not certain at all.

    For the winger slots, next year one of the top-6 is hopefully filled by Yamo or Pul (this is the key hope that almost everything else rests on), the other can be a cheap winger for them. This means, with luck, the only true need is one Legit Top-6 winger. The other cheap wingers can be internal (Sleppy with luck) or value deals.

    So close, yet so far.

  25. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Of all the glaring deficiencies of this team, i think the lack of any secondary scoring is the worst.

    I have a theory: Hockey is usually a game of mistakes. If you can outscore them, you win. What can you do to help? Minimise your mistakes. Sure. But if you still don’t try to outscore them, you’re still sunk.

    What i see with this team? Afraid to play. “Our penalty kill is no good. Don’t take penalties.” Right there means you are now afraid to play. Looch, Maroon and Kass all play best with that edge. Without it, i don’t think we can outscore our mistakes.

    Good points. I have been thinking the same thing generally. McLellan has been asking them to play ‘right and tight’ and now add offense. Perhaps give the age and makeup of the team they need to play balls out and slowly tighten things up.

    It would be traditional for the Oilers, old school. It seems to be ok for the two time champs who play with abandon and have missed the mark 3 times and been blown out. It at least they play with tempo and win enough , whereas our guy seem hesitant second guessing and playing too slow.

    Each group is different , each year is, and for this young team maybe the message was more for a vet team. I think these guys need the thoroughbred treatment, let them run and reign them in slowly.

  26. Nuclear leak says:

    Take away the Avs game and NYI newly formed 2nd line doesn’t have a stat line lol.

  27. neojanus says:

    I have wondered all season whether cementing Lucic to the second line when, in my opinion at least, he can’t skate with most of the league while making plays, is based off sheer managerial/coaching sheepishness on that horrific contract. It is pretty clear to everyone that Lucic is trending down in the line up for the future.

    Why not load up on a 2B/3 line and force teams to work like hell against them? Or is that too close to calling Chiarelli’s cap management out to the bike racks?

  28. zatch says:

    neojanus,

    As some of us have sorta discussed above, Top-9 seems to be the way of the future, the issue is largely, IMO, that TMac hates to run anything other than a mega-stacked top 6.

  29. stush18 says:

    neojanus:
    I have wondered all season whether cementing Lucic to the second line when, in my opinion at least, he can’t skate with most of the league while making plays, is based off sheer managerial/coaching sheepishness on that horrific contract. It is pretty clear to everyone that Lucic is trending down in the line up for the future.

    Why not load up on a 2B/3 line and force teams to work like hell against them? Or is that too close to calling Chiarelli’s cap management out to the bike racks?

    I dunno why people keep saying lucic is slower. He looks faster this year.

    He’s just not effective on the rush. It’s just not his style, never has been.

    Maroon-mcdavid-strome
    Lucic-Leon-slepy
    Cags-nuge-kass

    Or

    Maroon-mcdavid-slepy
    Cags-nuge-drai
    Lucic-strome-kass

  30. jtblack says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Love these Ad ons to the LT write up THX TO BOTH OF YOU

  31. Bag of Pucks says:

    How many times does Connor McDavid make an amazing play/ pass to feed a forward by the side of the net for an easy tap-in?

    You don’t need Leon Draisaitl receiving those passes for them to work.

    Honestly, the longer Todd delays on this, the worse it’s going to look when he finally makes the move and it becomes apparent to all what was lacking in the current roster deployment.

  32. neojanus says:

    stush18,

    I agree that Lucic looks a little faster than last year, but he looks slow compared to other second lines in the NHL.

    I think spreading Nuge, Drai, McD over three centre positions is the best key to find balance for the near future. Sending Lucic down to 2B or 3rd line doesn’t really remove a quality player for the pair either. DON’T trade Nuge unless you get a haul of excellence.

    TMac should manage his roster more shrewdly… and Chiarelli should go to the quiet room for a few days and talk to the entities for guidance.

  33. who says:

    zatch:
    who,

    Why the hell should we be waiting two years in the hopes our magic beans (no matter how good the pedigree on them) sprout? If they don’t work out, what then? Wait ANOTHER two years? Three if we’re being serious.

    I’m not suggesting more Eberle for Strome’s, or sending of Pu for an aging Alex Steen but management needs to be serious about upgrading with more established players, and be savvy while they do it.

    Maybe I misread your post but I thought you were recommending trading prospects for established scoring wingers.
    Problem with that approach is that established scoring wingers generally come with fairly big contracts. And we won’t have any cap room to afford that scoring winger next year.
    It may be a solution for this year, if you trade for a winger on an expiring contract, but will leave you in the same mess next year with one less cheap option to choose from.
    Chia has made his bet. They need to find internal solutions to salvage this season.

  34. hankster says:

    There’s a real possibility they miss the playoffs this year. While the game has been dominated by speedsters and youngsters, we have Letestu, Maroon, Lucic, Gryba with very slow boots. Who’s slower than these four in the NHL today?
    I think our GM goes with what worked for him in past success with a tougher lineup. It was needed after years of getting pummeled on the scoreboard and on the boards. But. it’s time to remove all four of those players if possible. It’s unfortunate all of Chia’s bets didn’t pay off from the off season.
    Pitlick and Oesterle both are fast skaters would be very helpful today.
    Never mind, lets just keep blaming Russel and Lucic for everything. As you were.

  35. krakman says:

    stush18: I dunno why people keep saying lucic is slower. He looks faster this year.

    He’s just not effective on the rush. It’s just not his style, never has been.

    Is Lucic good on the cycle? Or is that just an assumption, because honestly I see a player that can’t make a play in any zone, defensive, neutral, or offensive. It just looks like the game has passed him by, the game has gotten faster and its not just skating speed but you have less time everywhere on the ice, and Lucic can only make plays when he has a lot of time.

    For example getting the puck out of his own zone, it might be my bias but he looks like one of the worst wingers on the team doing this, and its something you would think would be his strength.

  36. neojanus says:

    krakman,

    THIS THIS THIS THIS THIS… ALL DAY LONG.

  37. russ99 says:

    neojanus:
    stush18,

    I agree that Lucic looks a little faster than last year, but he looks slow compared to other second lines in the NHL.

    I think spreading Nuge, Drai, McD over three centre positions is the best key to find balance for the near future. Sending Lucic down to 2B or 3rd line doesn’t really remove a quality player for the pair either. DON’T trade Nuge unless you get a haul of excellence.

    TMac should manage his roster more shrewdly… and Chiarelli should go to the quiet room for a few days and talk to the entities for guidance.

    If moving Lucic to the third line gets him away from RNH so be it, those two are like oil and water.

    But part of our problem is the desperation for offense has cost us on defense, and we give up too many easy chances on mismatches and odd man breaks. Then we get down in games and the rebuild malaise takes over.

    Maybe it’s time Todd went back and watched the Ducks playoff series, Lucic and Draisaitl on the cycle in front of the net, RNH shutting down the best players on the other team.

  38. McSorley33 says:

    russ99,

    If moving Lucic to the third line gets him away from RNH so be it, those two are like oil and water.
    *************************************************************************************************************
    I see it the exact same way…..and I mostly blame Looch.

    Looch needs to be out of the top six.

    Looch and Kass on the 3rd line could be very effective…

  39. Pouzar says:

    Haven’t won back to back games all year and yet our 2 best forwards are joined at the hip, except on the PP where you want your best on at the same time. Somebody put me out of my misery.

  40. Dino says:

    Maybe the Oilers struggles this year don’t have that much to do with the lack of secondary scoring especially in the bottom 6 and less talent on the roster. The oilers have a better team than their record. Not as good as last year but better than 4-8-1.

    – if talbot gets back to his normal save percentage
    – if the PP can start scoring more goals
    – if the PK can start preventing more goals

    I think those 3 things should be enough for the Oilers to win more games. They’re fine 5v5. The top 6 is on track or even exceeding last years production (Nuge, looch). I think the sooner they right this ship the playoffs could still be within reach. GO OILERS!!!!

  41. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Jaxon,

    Excellent Slepy post.

    Thanks for that.

  42. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    How many times does Connor McDavid make an amazing play/ pass to feed a forward by the side of the net for an easy tap-in?

    You don’t need Leon Draisaitl receiving those passes for them to work.

    Honestly, the longer Todd delays on this, the worse it’s going to look when he finally makes the move and it becomes apparent to all what was lacking in the current roster deployment.

    Truth.

    Might cost Tmac his job

  43. NativeNotFrench says:

    I do wonder why Todd seems hesitant to break up Leon and Connor. He did it in the playoffs and it worked like a charm but this season it just seems like he’s scared to break up the one line that works. I do like Todd as a coach but this stubbornness may cost him his job if he doesn’t adapt. I am fine with a loaded top 6 even but don’t load it with Connor, give RNH maroon and Drai and try Looch with Connor again even. Just try something different

  44. JimmyV1965 says:

    Pouzar:
    Haven’t won back to back games all year and yet our 2 best forwards are joined at the hip, except on the PP where you want your best on at the same time. Somebody put me out of my misery.

    It’s absolutely mind boggling.

  45. Pouzar says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Truth.

    Might cost Tmac his job

    +2

  46. OmJo says:

    “I’m not playing attention to that,” Connor McDavid said of the growing concern. “It doesn’t matter what other people think, or the media or the fans think, it matters how we feel in here.”

    Tell that to the fans who are “paying the fourth-highest ticket prices in the National Hockey League” so you can be the highest paid player in the NHL.

    I know what he means and I do agree with him even, just playing devils advocate here. Please go easy with the pitchforks. Watch the eyes.

  47. fifthcartel says:

    You have to admit that McLellan playing 97 and 29 together 5-on-5 but not on the power play is pretty hilarious.

    A lot of people begging for them to be split 5-on-5 but played on the power play and McLellan does the opposite during a horrible stretch, like Pouzar said, makes me laugh.

  48. OmJo says:

    The scary thing to think about is what would this team look like if it was McDavid and not Sekera out right now? We could very well have less wins than Arizona. We still don’t know if Draisaitl can push a line…

    You take Crosby off of Pittsburgh and they’re still a playoff team. Hell, Phil Kessel is leading their team in points right now.

  49. OmJo says:

    fifthcartel:
    You have to admit that McLellan playing 97 and 29 together 5-on-5 but not on the power play is pretty hilarious.

    A lot of people begging for them to be split 5-on-5 but played on the power play and McLellan does the opposite during a horrible stretch, like Pouzar said, makes me laugh.

    It almost seems like management is trolling the fans at this point, you’re right.

  50. stush18 says:

    Pouzar:
    Haven’t won back to back games all year and yet our 2 best forwards are joined at the hip, except on the PP where you want your best on at the same time. Somebody put me out of my misery.

    TOR and SJ both ran two units that were relatively equal in skill last year.

    Whoever was operating the best got the minutes.

    I don’t mind it, if you’re using it honestly. Also works when they are separated at 5v5.

  51. Bag of Pucks says:

    What this team needs is a night where Leon centers a line with Looch and Milan pots a hatty.

    It’s hard to undervalue what that would do the collective mindset of this team and fanbase.

  52. OmJo says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Good stuff. And I didn’t miss the PDO mention this time!

    Because there wasn’t one!

    #MoralVictory!

  53. stush18 says:

    OmJo:
    The scary thing to think about is what would this team look like if it was McDavid and not Sekera out right now? We could very well have less wins than Arizona. We still don’t know if Draisaitl can push a line…

    You take Crosby off of Pittsburgh and they’re still a playoff team. Hell, Phil Kessel is leading their team in points right now.

    Last game, gryba played about 20 sec less than mcdavid. Losing sekera right now has such a massive and understated effect on this team right now. It’s why TMac was running klefbom/Larsson so hard. He had to, because there were no other options.

    That’s the failure I pin on chiarelli right now. A dman should have been brought in.

    I could care less about the strome eberle move.

  54. stush18 says:

    On another note, I really hope lucic-nuge-slepy have another good game, especially nuge.

  55. Cassandra says:

    Watching the Oilers you might miss how much the league has changed this year.

    League Average save percentage is down from .910 to .905. Goals are up .6/game. The rest of the league has learned how to score while the Oilers have not.

    Talbot’s save percentage is .903. This isn’t really the problem.

    The problem is that Nuge’s good start to the season, 9 points, put him tied for 116th in the league along with dozens of other guys. Las Vegas has 6 players with 9 or more points, and I’m not sure this is a fluke. An expansion team has a more talented forward group than the Oilers. Think on that. Alex Tuch would be the 4th or 5th best forward on this team. That is stunning.

    The problem with this team isn’t defense, it is offense. The low shooting percentage is almost entirely from the bottom half of the roster. The shooting percentage will regress, but the mean it is regressing too isn’t NHL average since the Oilers employ so many replacement level players.

    You can’t just say this is the same team that was good last year. First, it isn’t. Second, the rest of the league got better while this team got worse.

    This isn’t just variation. Outside of a handful of teams, the Oilers have the worst forward lineup in the league. While almost every other team has the talent to run two or three scoring lines, the Oilers can only put together one. There is no solution to this problem.

  56. Jethro Tull says:

    Brian Ferlin on waivers. Worth a shot?😏

  57. Jethro Tull says:

    Cassandra,

    Good post. What are we rold on here? If it matters, it can be counted. If it can ve counted, it’s a skill. Well, scoring goals is a repeatable skill. We’re not doing it. And it’s not “bad luck.” After listening to Maroon the over day, “yeah, I should have probably one timed it” after he missed from two feet, these guys need to bear down and make sure to score. Murray’s excellent save wouldn’t have happened if Letestu had done anything over than pass it at him.

  58. Cassandra says:

    I think everyone would agree that the Red Wings are a pretty middling team. Now take a look at their forward depth. Who on the Oilers could break into this team?

    They go 10 deep in solid forwards. who on the Oilers could break into this group? The Oilers have the better top end talent with McDavid and Draisatl, and Nuge would fit in, but outside of that what do the Oilers have. Is Maroon better than Abdelkader? Lucic is a 4th line player on the Red Wings. So are Caggiula, Slepyshev, and Letestu. Kassian might be able to play on their third line.

    Tatar-Zetterberg-Nyquist
    Mantha-Larkin-Anthanasiou
    Abdelkader-Nielsen-Frk
    Helm

    The Oilers have terrible talent. There is no way around that conclusion.

  59. OmJo says:

    In other news, David f’ng Desharnais has 7pts in 16 games with the Rangers. I didn’t even know he was still in the NHL.

    Not going to hate on Chiarelli for this one. Instead going to eat a bit of crow here.

    Good for him.

  60. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    Jethro Tull,

    – I’m agreeing with this, and some of Cassanda, and WG alluded it.

    – Kailer was really a boat anchor. Actual results matter. One of the worst top-6 forwards in the league: had no business being here for as long as he did, simply by virtue of a 60% sh in a few games against muppets in pre-season: He wasn’t a high draft, 18 and a midget: dumb

    – Interesting dynamic between coach and GM I believe, and a very protracted lesson to be teaching

    – Team is ready to go on a tear

    * and if McL relly believed that Kailer was a better solution on top-6 than Cags or Sleppy (who was to be fair injured), or even Kassian, then that reflects poorly on him. Certainly his verbal was to defend Kailer, maybe that’s part of the job description…

  61. Cassandra says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Cassandra,

    Good post. What are we rold on here? If it matters, it can be counted. If it can ve counted, it’s a skill. Well, scoring goals is a repeatable skill. We’re not doing it. And it’s not “bad luck.” After listening to Maroon the over day, “yeah, I should have probably one timed it” after he missed from two feet, these guys need to bear down and make sure to score. Murray’s excellent save wouldn’t have happened if Letestu had done anything over than pass it at him.

    Letestu’s career shooting percentage is 11.1%. This year it is 8.7%. That is a difference of half a goal. Letestu hasn’t been unlucky. This is who he is.

    Maroon’s career shooting percentage is 12%. This year it is 15.4%. That is an extra goal bonus. We can’t expect Maroon to start shooting better than he is.

    McDavid will do better, but RNH will do worse.

    On the whole the Oilers should start scoring more through regression, but the gap they need to make up is large. They are last in the league in goals scored.

  62. OmJo says:

    stush18: Last game, gryba played about 20 sec less than mcdavid.Losing sekera right now has such a massive and understated effect on this team right now.It’s why TMac was running klefbom/Larsson so hard. He had to, because there were no other options.

    That’s the failure I pin on chiarelli right now. A dman should have been brought in.

    I could care less about the strome eberle move.

    Losing Sekera, along with a slow start by Klefbom and Benning is really hurting. If those two picked up where they left off, (playoff and/or pre-concussion Benning) then we might not miss him that much.

    That said, I’ve always considered him a fundamental part of the D core and it’s really showing. He brings everything into harmony. Puts everybody down a peg, takes pressure off the top pairing, makes his partner play better, whoever they are. Right up there behind only Talbot for Chiarelli’s best addition to the team, IMO.

    With Strome, I hate the trade. Still do. But I have time for the organization to try him at 1RW. At this point, I have time for them to try anybody at 1RW who isn’t Leon Draisaitl or Kailer Yamamoto.

  63. OmJo says:

    Cassandra,

    The sad reality.

    Too many bets on unproven players to play pivotal roles on the team. Too much reliance on McDavid and Talbot bailing us out again without providing them with better tools (ie players) to do it.

    Chiarelli didn’t improve the team at all this summer. Relied on players to take the next step and the coach to have the patience to give them the opportunity to take the next step. The moves he did make (Eberle -> Strome, Pouliot -> Jokinen, Pitlick -> nobody) made us worse offensively.

    Ugh.

  64. Georges says:

    Cassandra,

    “Goals are up .6/game. The rest of the league has learned how to score…”

    Maybe just early. Or maybe something to do with an expansion draft and an expansion team.

    Interesting if the trend holds up.

    I seem to be noticing shooters hitting the top of the net more and more on the highlights. The math makes sense. Even if you miss those high shots more often than you get them on net, if you get them on net, they’re a much higher probability of being a goal. The goalies have taken away the bottom of the net. The shooters are trying their luck up high.

    Basketball figured out the value of shot attempts from different parts of the court. Tactics changed. Scoring went up. Maybe hockey’s going through the same thing.

  65. Bag of Pucks says:

    You ever notice how before the season, the vast majority of posters were bullish on the Oilers chances and this was clearly reflected in the prognosticated point totals for Hunter’s death march? There were very few posters predicting the Oilers would have substantially less points than less season, and in fact most were predicting slightly less cos of the Sekera injury or slightly more based on player development and progression.

    But the team stumbles out of the gate, the bandwagon empties, and now suddenly everyone felt all along that Chiarelli had gutted the team and led them to the bottom of the standings?

    Ya know what ladies and germs? You were bullish on the Oilers chances and your death march predictions reflected this cos you liked the teams’ progress last season and felt sufficiently satisfied with Chia’s moves to believe the Oilers would weather the storm on the Sekera injury and the Strome for Eberle returns. If you didn’t and in fact were predicting dire things in terms of the team’s forecasted point totals, congratulations! Your crystal ball is 20/20, you’ve 100% earned the right to your ‘I told you so’s’ today and your pessimism has been validated by your team sucking. Joy.

    There’s a vast swath of posters on here that were reasonably satisfied with Chiarelli’s offseason, and the only thing that has changed between then and now is the actual performance of the roster on the ice. Quite frankly: most of us are just as guilty as Pete in being optimistic about this team’s prospects. But hindsight, man it is one powerful elixir. I know it gets a good hold on me when I look back at the team’s drafting record.

  66. Jethro Tull says:

    Kinger_Oil.redux,

    Yamamoto wasn’t an anchor, but he missed open nets. Had he not, we wouldn’t be talking about it. Keep your eye on the prize and do the celly after you score, not before!

  67. Bag of Pucks says:

    Isn’t this also the first season that they were successful in getting full compliance with the reduced sizes for the goalie equipment? That might help to explain some of the upward trend in scoring and downward trend in sv pct.

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/nhl-goalie-equipment-change-unlikely-this-season-1.3741367

  68. Cassandra says:

    Georges:
    Cassandra,

    “Goals are up .6/game. The rest of the league has learned how to score…”

    Maybe just early. Or maybe something to do with an expansion draft and an expansion team.

    Interesting if the trend holds up.

    I seem to be noticing shooters hitting the top of the net more and more on the highlights. The math makes sense. Even if you miss those high shots more often than you get them on net, if you get them on net, they’re a much higher probability of being a goal. The goalies have taken away the bottom of the net. The shooters are trying their luck up high.

    Basketball figured out the value of shot attempts from different parts of the court. Tactics changed. Scoring went up. Maybe hockey’s going through the same thing.

    It’s early, but it isn’t that early. I think something has changed. Perhaps it is more power plays, that would increase shooting percentage. Perhaps it is dilution of talent through expansion. Perhaps it is an increased opportunity for skill players, either through expansion or from tactical considerations.

    It could be the stick infractions are creating more room. It could be the smaller goalie equipment.

    All of the above?

    I do think that in periods of transition it is unlikely that the transition will occur in a uniform fashion. Thus, one of the reasons that shooting percentage tends to regress to a league average is that forwards are already selected somewhat for this skill, so that the players who aren’t going to shoot at that percentage (like me) don’t ever make it to the NHL. The same is true likely true about defensive ability.

    However, this presupposes a common selection criteria over time. If the selection criteria is changing, either through the development of new skills, or through different management criteria, then the “league average” will stop being representative of the population in general.

    You have frequently noted that the relationship between shot % and goal % has been decreasing of late, which would indicate an intervening variable in goals, i.e. shooting percentage. If so, then the spread of shooting percentages between individuals (if it is skill based) or teams (if it is tactics based) should be increasing. Is this the case?

  69. leadfarmer says:

    Cassandra,

    Criteria has definitely changed. All this speed coming into the game to break down defensive coverage before it can setup

  70. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    You ever notice how before the season, the vast majority of posters were bullish on the Oilers chances and this was clearly reflected in the prognosticated point totals for Hunter’s death march? There were very few posters predicting the Oilers would have substantially less points than less season, and in fact most were predicting slightly less cos of the Sekera injury or slightly more based on player development and progression.

    But the team stumbles out of the gate, the bandwagon empties, and now suddenly everyone felt all along that Chiarelli had gutted the team and led them to the bottom of the standings?

    Ya know what ladies and germs? You were bullish on the Oilers chances and your death march predictions reflected this cos you liked the teams’ progress last season and felt sufficiently satisfied with Chia’s moves to believe the Oilers would weather the storm on the Sekera injury and the Strome for Eberle returns. If you didn’t and in fact were predicting dire things in terms of the team’s forecasted point totals, congratulations! Your crystal ball is 20/20, you’ve 100% earned the right to your ‘I told you so’s’ today and your pessimism has been validated by your team sucking. Joy.

    There’s a vast swath of posters on here that were reasonably satisfied with Chiarelli’s offseason, and the only thing that has changed between then and now is the actual performance of the roster on the ice. Quite frankly: most of us are just as guilty as Pete in being optimistic about this team’s prospects. But hindsight, man it is one powerful elixir. I know it gets a good hold on me when I look back at the team’s drafting record.

    I believe I predicted 94 points and I am still fully on the bandwagon.

    I care about this team too much and spend too much time reading about it, listening about it, talking about it and watching it to have that time spent in constant negativity and complaining about the coach, the GM, their decisions, particular players, etc.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m frustrated and disappointed and I understand the constant negativity and such complaining, I just don’t have the energy to join in. Its very disappointing as I’m clearly invested in the team and talking about it on social media, its just lost is enjoyment over the last few weeks which has decreased my enjoyment of something that is a big part of my life.

    I am going to continue with a positive attitude – there are many hockey games left this year and I am still hopeful for a turnaround and a playoff spot and I, once again, hope that starts tonight.

    If we never see a big enough turnaround this year, that will be disappointing however I won’t stop watching the games. Shit, I still get to watch McDavid and Drai every night along with the continued development of guys like Nurse, etc.

    Further, I will still have a positive attitude surround what a boon it could mean for this organization to get a decent draft pick (hopefully somewhere in the 10-12 range so its not a bottom feeder, or 1st overall by winning the lottery) plus the nice assets we will get from selling off Maroon, Letstu and even Jokinen. I will see it as a one year re-tool that will provide the prospect currency we will need for consistent contendorship.

    Go Oilers!

    Off to Brooklyn pretty soon!

  71. flea says:

    Some dissent from the Toronto media around Mitch Marner.

    Any thoughts on this player? I don’t know much about him. He shoots right. Could he be a trigger man for Connor or is he more of a playmaker.

    I keep thinking – who will be the first winger to score 40 on Connor’s wing? That is who he needs to, and the team needs, take the next step. I think Chia is looking but hasn’t found that person yet. I don’t buy that a vet like Vanek or Sharp would’ve been that guy. Think he’ll come here in a trade, hopefully one where the Oilers don’t gut another position to acquire. Gotta be a younger player. Marner kinda fits the bill but I don’t know much about him.

    Also don’t think that Eberle or Hall would’ve been the guy either, and that is exactly why both those guys got traded.

    McLellan is reluctant to break up Drai and Connor because who else is going to play there? Up to the GM to find him someone.

    Go Oilers, enough F’ing around, go get a few wins.

  72. who says:

    OriginalPouzar: I believe I predicted 94 points and I am still fully on the bandwagon.

    I care about this team too much and spend too much time reading about it, listening about it, talking about it and watching it to have that time spent in constant negativity and complaining about the coach, the GM, their decisions, particular players, etc.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m frustrated and disappointed and I understand the constant negativity and such complaining, I just don’t have the energy to join in. Its very disappointing as I’m clearly invested in the team and talking about it on social media, its just lost is enjoyment over the last few weeks which has decreased my enjoyment of something that is a big part of my life.

    I am going to continue with a positive attitude – there are many hockey games left this year and I am still hopeful for a turnaround and a playoff spot and I, once again, hope that starts tonight.

    If we never see a big enough turnaround this year, that will be disappointing however I won’t stop watching the games.Shit, I still get to watch McDavid and Drai every night along with the continued development of guys like Nurse, etc.

    Further, I will still have a positive attitude surround what a boon it could mean for this organization to get a decent draft pick (hopefully somewhere in the 10-12 range so its not a bottom feeder, or 1st overall by winning the lottery) plus the nice assets we will get from selling off Maroon, Letstu and even Jokinen. I will see it as a one year re-tool that will provide the prospect currency we will need for consistent contendorship.

    Go Oilers!

    Off to Brooklyn pretty soon!

    Like your attitude. Very sensible take on the current state of affairs. No matter how the season turns out there will be opportunities for this franchise. Makes much more sense to discuss moves moving forward than to rehash and wail about mistakes made in the past.
    At least that’s what Satchel Paige would say.

  73. Material pocession says:

    OriginalPouzar: I believe I predicted 94 points and I am still fully on the bandwagon.

    I care about this team too much and spend too much time reading about it, listening about it, talking about it and watching it to have that time spent in constant negativity and complaining about the coach, the GM, their decisions, particular players, etc.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m frustrated and disappointed and I understand the constant negativity and such complaining, I just don’t have the energy to join in. Its very disappointing as I’m clearly invested in the team and talking about it on social media, its just lost is enjoyment over the last few weeks which has decreased my enjoyment of something that is a big part of my life.

    I am going to continue with a positive attitude – there are many hockey games left this year and I am still hopeful for a turnaround and a playoff spot and I, once again, hope that starts tonight.

    If we never see a big enough turnaround this year, that will be disappointing however I won’t stop watching the games.Shit, I still get to watch McDavid and Drai every night along with the continued development of guys like Nurse, etc.

    Further, I will still have a positive attitude surround what a boon it could mean for this organization to get a decent draft pick (hopefully somewhere in the 10-12 range so its not a bottom feeder, or 1st overall by winning the lottery) plus the nice assets we will get from selling off Maroon, Letstu and even Jokinen. I will see it as a one year re-tool that will provide the prospect currency we will need for consistent contendorship.

    Go Oilers!

    Off to Brooklyn pretty soon!

    You are a material optimist OP. Enjoy the game. If you have the chance to spend any time in Brooklyn, it is actually pretty nice in some spots. The Park Slope neighbourhood next to Prospect Park is walkable and there are many nice restaurants and brownstones with boutique shops. And you probably won’t get mugged. Sunset Park is also somewhat close to there and it is an up-and-coming place (also has a nice view of lower Manhatten). Stay out of Flatbush.

  74. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    You ever notice how before the season, the vast majority of posters were bullish on the Oilers chances and this was clearly reflected in the prognosticated point totals for Hunter’s death march? There were very few posters predicting the Oilers would have substantially less points than less season, and in fact most were predicting slightly less cos of the Sekera injury or slightly more based on player development and progression.

    But the team stumbles out of the gate, the bandwagon empties, and now suddenly everyone felt all along that Chiarelli had gutted the team and led them to the bottom of the standings?

    Ya know what ladies and germs? You were bullish on the Oilers chances and your death march predictions reflected this cos you liked the teams’ progress last season and felt sufficiently satisfied with Chia’s moves to believe the Oilers would weather the storm on the Sekera injury and the Strome for Eberle returns. If you didn’t and in fact were predicting dire things in terms of the team’s forecasted point totals, congratulations! Your crystal ball is 20/20, you’ve 100% earned the right to your ‘I told you so’s’ today and your pessimism has been validated by your team sucking. Joy.

    There’s a vast swath of posters on here that were reasonably satisfied with Chiarelli’s offseason, and the only thing that has changed between then and now is the actual performance of the roster on the ice. Quite frankly: most of us are just as guilty as Pete in being optimistic about this team’s prospects. But hindsight, man it is one powerful elixir. I know it gets a good hold on me when I look back at the team’s drafting record.

    I had them at 94 pre-season.

    LT asked me on his show last week and I thought they could still get to 94.

    PP needs to get going and PK needs an overhaul though.

  75. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Oilers goal scorers net positive/even/negative from season start to Nov 6 year over year:

    Player Net year over year
    TYLER PITLICK -4 – Gone
    MILAN LUCIC -3
    BENOIT POULIOT -3 – Gone
    JORDAN EBERLE -3 – Gone
    DARNELL NURSE -2
    ZACK KASSIAN -2
    ANTON LANDER -1 – Gone
    ANTON SLEPYSHEV -1
    JESSE PULJUJARVI -1 – not on roster
    CONNOR MCDAVID 0
    PATRICK MAROON 0
    LEON DRAISAITL 0
    MARK LETESTU 0
    ANDREJ SEKERA 0
    BRANDON DAVIDSON 0
    DRAKE CAGGUILA 1
    ADAM LARSSON 1
    KRIS RUSSELL 1
    MATT BENNING 1
    OSCAR KLEFBOM 1
    RYAN STROME 2
    RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS 4

    So it looks like the lack of goals is almost entirely due to who Peter shipped out, Looch, Nurse, Kassian.

    We can cut Sleppy some slack due to injury to start the year and its only one goal.

    Can’t really count on Nurse and Kassian to score though. Those are more like bonus goals when they happen.

    Eberle was 1st line at this time last year.
    Pouliot was 3rd line.
    Pitlick was 4th line.

    There’s a big chunk of the lack of depth scoring.

  76. Pouzar says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I had them at 94 pre-season.

    LT asked me on his show last week and I thought they could still get to 94.

    PP needs to get going and PK needs an overhaul though.

    The PP will get better no doubt. I don’t see any material way this PK gets better however.

  77. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    There’s a vast swath of posters on here that were reasonably satisfied with Chiarelli’s offseason, and the only thing that has changed between then and now is the actual performance of the roster on the ice.

    I argue that there was a very large contingent that didn’t think he did enough on RW and 2RD

    It was a topic almost daily.

  78. Material pocession says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    I think most of us were confident that the team would have a better record than they currently do. There is no logical explanation for the cratering of the power play and penalty kill. Also, Cam Talbot was playing better last year and that is huge. Chiarelli’s mistakes were not critical but he should not have gambled with Yamamoto, JP, and Auvitu to fill the holes that were created in the offseason. Yammer, in particular, was an ill-advised play from the start. Who cares how fantastic his training camp was? Sam Steel, the best player in the WHL (and a year older than Kailer) was sent back to junior for another season. Why try to force a fresh-faced rookie onto a lineup that is supposed to be contending for the Stanley Cup? These aren’t massive blunders but they are mistakes that were avoidable.

  79. Truth says:

    What’s wrong with the team?

    They got worse in the off-season. Eberle for Strome turned out as expected. Strict salary dump. Pouliot out and Jokinen in turned out bad for the Oilers. Pouliot had a bad year last season and was bought out because of it. Jokinen was bought out last season and it’s easy now to see why. I’d take Pouliot (at his price point) over Jokinen (at his price point) any day. Oesterle was left to walk away. While this seems insignificant the Oilers are brutal at D and slow as hell. He would replace Auvitu defensively without issue and provides more speed, IMO.

    Talbot should not have been expected to repeat last season. What can you do about it? Probably not a lot, but the narrative should have been to beef up the D in order to allow Talbot to repeat his W total, not screw the D Talbot’s got it!

    Confidence. Way too high expectations were put on this team, especially after they only got worse in the offseason. A Stanley Cup favourite at the start of the season?! McLellan and staff only emphasized this, not tempered expectations as they should have. There have also been many rumours swirling regarding internal “incidents” with this team Pure speculation and it is only that, but something like that would make sense regarding the total garbage fire this team currently is.

    Chiarelli’s awful trades. Hall for Larsson and Reinhart for a 1st and 2nd has showed its impact and it’s huge. Larsson has not looked good by my eye. He’s been solely responsible for way too many key GA, especially at the cost of his acquisition. Oilers received a 3-4 D for a 1 LW.

    Also, trading your 1st and 2nd round picks for a player who clears waivers 2 years later is atrocious. It should have been obvious at the time Reinhart was a bottom pairing player, at best. It doesn’t help that Barzal slipped to the Oilers pick and they proceeded with the trade anyway. The Oilers practically traded a top 6 NHL F for an AHL D.

    Eberle for Strome was a salary dump, it’s known. What should also have been known is that Strome cannot replace Eberle. If you’re going to do that move, have a fix to replace the player leaving or expect to be worse. If the answer is Yamo or Pulju should have stepped in that is simply poor planning.

    How do they fix it? Hope the team turns it around. There is no magical trade or acquisition or firing that helps a mediocre team with zero confidence. They need to put their work boots on and realize they are a bubble playoff team and embrace it.

  80. SwedishPoster says:

    Game fourteen so time for the 14th song in the ongoing “SwedishPoster’s Swedish game songs”. This time let’s go back to the late 60s, Oilers season seems to be heading towards an early night so tonight I give you “Här kommer natten” or “Here comes the night” with artist Pugh Rogefeldt. Pugh released one of the first proper rock albums out of Sweden in the 60s and is seen as one of the more important artists in swedish rock. This 1969 song is a beauty. There’s no doubt which time it’s from, the sound is very late 60s early 70s.
    The lyrics is like something that might run through your head a bit drunk on the late nightbus home.

    “Here comes the night
    Cold and wonderfully long
    Here comes the darkness
    Duh bee duh bee duh bee duh duh duh

    When everyone sleeps from the days workload
    Then comes the night
    Duh bee duh bee duh bee duh duh duh”

    Without further ado “Här kommer natten” written and here performed by Pugh Rogefeldt

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=DPIz3dnG2bY

    As a small bonus here’s a modern take on the song with Miss Li, performed in front of the song’s creator on tv show “Så mycket bättre” (so much better), a show where a bunch of artists hang out, perform each others songs and tell how great everyone is, from a few years ago. Nice version, she shows off here singing chops nicely, though I personally prefer the original.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=q1KmZDZFC8M

  81. Bag of Pucks says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Bag of Pucks,

    There’s a vast swath of posters on here that were reasonably satisfied with Chiarelli’s offseason, and the only thing that has changed between then and now is the actual performance of the roster on the ice.

    I argue that there was a very large contingent that didn’t think he did enough on RW and 2RD

    It was a topic almost daily.

    Was undoubtedly a topic of conversation, but it didn’t prevent most posters from remaining bullish about the team’s prospects and the predictions reflected that.

  82. jake70 says:

    Wow….Roy Halladay , jays pitcher dies in plane crash off Florida. RIP.

  83. Georges says:

    Cassandra: It’s early, but it isn’t that early.I think something has changed.Perhaps it is more power plays, that would increase shooting percentage.Perhaps it is dilution of talent through expansion.Perhaps it is an increased opportunity for skill players, either through expansion or from tactical considerations.

    It could be the stick infractions are creating more room.It could be the smaller goalie equipment.

    All of the above?

    I do think that in periods of transition it is unlikely that the transition will occur in a uniform fashion.Thus, one of the reasons that shooting percentage tends to regress to a league average is that forwards are already selected somewhat for this skill, so that the players who aren’t going to shoot at that percentage (like me) don’t ever make it to the NHL.The same is true likely true about defensive ability.

    However, this presupposes a common selection criteria over time.If the selection criteria is changing, either through the development of new skills, or through different management criteria, then the “league average” will stop being representative of the population in general.

    You have frequently noted that the relationship between shot % and goal % has been decreasing of late, which would indicate an intervening variable in goals, i.e. shooting percentage.If so, then the spread of shooting percentages between individuals (if it is skill based) or teams (if it is tactics based) should be increasing.Is this the case?

    I’ll have to think about your questions. Here’s some data I pulled in the meantime:

    Goals scored per game by strength, 2016-17, 2017-18 (so far)

    Total, 5.45, 6.10
    5on5, 3.65, 3.90
    5on4, 1.04, 1.28
    4on5, 0.14, 0.21
    6on5, 0.08, 0.14
    5on6, 0.22, 0.25
    3on3, 0.13, 0.11

    PP opportunities per game:

    16-17 5.97
    17-18 7.14

    So I think the increase in PP scoring is coming from the increase in opportunities rather than an increase in efficiency. Also explains some of the increase in SH scoring, i.e., more opportunities to score shorthanded as well.

  84. jtblack says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    I Fall into the crowd of “Didnt think PC did enough” & remained Bullish on the team. They were a 103 pt team. I predicted 99 (slight drop). I still dont think they are this Bad. I think once Reggir is back and T Mac can drum up 2 decent lines, things will change. they may noy be a 99 pt team but I dont think they are a 79 pt team either.

    I thought PC would sign someone like Vrbata and / or Colin Miller. He did nothing.

    So I remain that this team has quality parts and I really think the Coach needs to be better, Reggie comes back AND MAYBE PC will throw this team a bone ….. Bring in 1 or 2 payers that can skate.

    The roster is not far off. But it is off.

    DIDNT like RUSSELL SIGNING OR REINHART DEAL. DISLIKE BOTH TODAY.

    Also thought Strome had speed. Highly disaapointed in him (I know it was a cap dump)

  85. anjinsan says:

    Mr. LT,
    It stands to reason it would be a worthy undertaking to compare the haul Sakic got for his star, Duchene, against the meager return Chiarelli got for his star, Hall. Are you not embarrassed by Chiarelli’s terrible return? Is there really another more fitting word than incompetence?
    In an earlier column/blog, you centered on Chiarelli and beseeched your readership to be civil in disagreement. Most of those who are critical of the Harvard-educated, ‘balls in the air’, GM came by it honestly. In light of the details of Sakic’s haul it just makes me not want to support the Oilers under Chiarelli, the size of his losses being so painful in dashing hope.

  86. Professor Q says:

    anjinsan:
    Mr. LT,
    It stands to reason it would be a worthy undertaking to compare the haul Sakic got for his star, Duchene, against the meager return Chiarelli got for his star, Hall.Are you not embarrassed by Chiarelli’s terrible return?Is there really another more fitting word than incompetence?
    In an earlier column/blog, you centered on Chiarelli and beseeched your readership to be civil in disagreement.Most of those who are critical of the Harvard-educated, ‘balls in the air’, GM came by it honestly. In light of the details of Sakic’s haul it just makes me not want to support the Oilers under Chiarelli, the size of his losses being so painful in dashing hope.

    Dost thou hateth Larsson so?

  87. Material pocession says:

    anjinsan:
    Mr. LT,
    It stands to reason it would be a worthy undertaking to compare the haul Sakic got for his star, Duchene, against the meager return Chiarelli got for his star, Hall.Are you not embarrassed by Chiarelli’s terrible return?Is there really another more fitting word than incompetence?
    In an earlier column/blog, you centered on Chiarelli and beseeched your readership to be civil in disagreement.Most of those who are critical of the Harvard-educated, ‘balls in the air’, GM came by it honestly. In light of the details of Sakic’s haul it just makes me not want to support the Oilers under Chiarelli, the size of his losses being so painful in dashing hope.

    Yeah. What a haul….of magic beans. Plan the parade in Denver.

  88. Side says:

    Material pocession: Yeah.What a haul….of magic beans.Plan the parade in Denver.

    I would normally agree with this kind of snark, if Chiarelli hasn’t already bled a ton of magic beans.

    Magic beans which could be used to acquire a proven player, or magic beans which could turn into meaningful players that add depth to the organization (depth that is sorely lacking).

  89. admiralmark says:

    Side: I would normally agree with this kind of snark, if Chiarelli hasn’t already bled a ton of magic beans.

    Magic beans which could be used to acquire a proven player, or magic beans which could turn into meaningful players that add depth to the organization (depth that is sorely lacking).

    We’ll all get to watch one of those Magic Beans play for the Islanders tonight. Maybe that Magic Bean(Barzal) could come in handy right about now to solve the Oilers RW issue?

  90. SwedishPoster says:

    anjinsan:
    Mr. LT,
    It stands to reason it would be a worthy undertaking to compare the haul Sakic got for his star, Duchene, against the meager return Chiarelli got for his star, Hall.Are you not embarrassed by Chiarelli’s terrible return?Is there really another more fitting word than incompetence?
    In an earlier column/blog, you centered on Chiarelli and beseeched your readership to be civil in disagreement.Most of those who are critical of the Harvard-educated, ‘balls in the air’, GM came by it honestly. In light of the details of Sakic’s haul it just makes me not want to support the Oilers under Chiarelli, the size of his losses being so painful in dashing hope.

    Larsson is a better return than what Avs got. The only part I truly like is Girard who may very well make the deal a good one but it’s a gamble. Considering the very public way in which Duchene wanted out I think they did ok for their rebuild but a haul? Nah.

    Larsson is getting so undervalued it’s ridiculous.

  91. McSorley33 says:

    Any chance Hunter could ‘out’ some of the people that predicted over 100 points?

    I kid. I kid.

    My own prediction brings me great shame.

  92. McSorley33 says:

    Now, there is no way the raw, green 20 year old rookie Matt Barzal outscores Milan Lucic this year is there?

    #secondaryscoring

  93. StixMalone says:

    Everyone here so bitter about Barzal myself included but no way the oilers would’ve picked him any ways #becauseOilers

  94. StixMalone says:

    McSorley33:
    Any chance Hunter could ‘out’ some of the people that predicted over 100 points?

    I kid. I kid.

    My own prediction brings me great shame.

    Oops I did it again……shame on me once but twice? Argh

  95. Truth says:

    Larsson is getting so undervalued it’s ridiculous.

    Would Hall for Larsson be a fair trade today? I don’t think NJD would do that in 100 years.

    Would they take Larsson + Pulju or Yamo? I don’t think that’s a sure thing.

  96. digger50 says:

    I was also a 94 point prediction.

    Point taken however, and I do remember the optimism this summer. One would suggest a trade only to be bombed by “who would we move?” As if we couldn’t possibly improve at any position.

    I think this optimism crashing to earth is part of what hurts.

    Peters summer was a fail but that’s old news now. Let’s see if the Coach and team can play slightly above 500 the rest of the season and sneak into the playoffs, that’s the new hope.

  97. Dustylegnd says:

    The article by Wilis was excellent, late reading the post today so maybe this has been said or asked already today but anyways….

    I have recently been contemplating why TMc insists on keeping McDavid and Drai together, my question becomes even more relevant as we continue to lose more than we win

    I have been a defender of TMc, claiming when things do not work he quickly adjusts, and makes changes

    My claim is clearly not valid as he continues to run Dari and McDavid together game after game, creating a losing record, I keep posting McT doesn’t push string uphill, also no longer valid

    THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY IS CONTINUING THE SAME BEHAVIOUR AND EXPECTING A DIFFERENT OUTCOME

    TMc continues to run his two best players together on the 1st unit, with poor outcomes..
    Woodguy has provided excellent analysis clearly demonstrating that no matter who you run with McDavid his scoring numbers remain very close to the same and whom ever you run on McDavids right side, they will score at a higher rate than they would otherwise score at, or at least that is how I remember it…let me know if I am mistaken

    Ergo: based on the article by Willis and Woodguys analysis, leaving Drai with McDavid is clearly a sub optimal utilization of available assets, WTF is TMc thinking?

    What say you?

  98. northof51 says:

    jake70,

    You are free to drink what you wish but I’m not supporting Moosehead until they stop with this nonsense… http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/moosehead-mus-knuckle-beer-battle-trademark-1.3414734.

  99. thehop says:

    flea,

    I’ve watched every Loafs game this season… followed them extensively last season as well.

    To my eye, Marner and the Nuge have comparable offensive prowess. Marner doesn’t not play the 200 ft game well which is most likely why he is struggling under a Babcock system.

    I’d rather see Pulujarvi develop.

  100. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Georges: I’ll have to think about your questions. Here’s some data I pulled in the meantime:

    Goals scored per game by strength, 2016-17, 2017-18 (so far)

    Total, 5.45, 6.10
    5on5, 3.65, 3.90
    5on4, 1.04, 1.28
    4on5, 0.14, 0.21
    6on5, 0.08, 0.14
    5on6, 0.22, 0.25
    3on3, 0.13, 0.11

    PP opportunities per game:

    16-17 5.97
    17-18 7.14

    So I think the increase in PP scoring is coming from the increase in opportunities rather than an increase in efficiency. Also explains some of the increase in SH scoring, i.e., more opportunities to score shorthanded as well.

    in regards to PP opportunities per game.

    I looked at this year’s trend here: http://becauseoilers.blogspot.com/2017/11/a-month-in-what-is-trend-in-nhl-for.html?m=1

    It started out hot, but last week was down to just over 3 per team per game just like the last 7 years or so

  101. godot10 says:

    OmJo: Losing Sekera, along with a slow start by Klefbom and Benning is really hurting. If those two picked up where they left off, (playoff and/or pre-concussion Benning) then we might not miss him that much.

    Benning’s poor start was because he was paired with Russell. His poor start was predicted if that was the pairing. That pairings’s bad start then led to Klefbom trying to do too much with Larsson, and be something he isn’t.

    This blog was told in the summer the way to go with Sekera out, was Nurse-Larsson and Klefbom-Benning. Took McLellan training camp and 10% of the season to figure out what was self-evident to anyone who has watched the team last year.

  102. --hudson-- says:

    James Mirtle
    @mirtle
    Hearing that Sunny Mehta, the Devils director of hockey analytics, has left the team. Bright guy with unique background.
    —————
    Any word what’s happening with him?

  103. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Dustylegnd,

    I will say this in TMac’s defense.

    97-29 are scoring 4.7 goals per hour this year even accounting for the DET debacle.

    I think he wants to bank some wins before moving off of it.

    Long term 97-29 score ~3.5/60 just like almost every other long term RW but coaches live and die by each game and I bet Tmac is living and dying per shift these days.

  104. Georges says:

    Cassandra,

    “It’s early, but it isn’t that early.”

    You’re right. We’ve played 222 games so far this season. We’re seeing 6.1 goals per game.

    I calculate the 95% confidence interval as:

    lower limit: 5.77
    upper limit: 6.43

    Last season’s goals per game was 5.45 which is outside the interval.

    More scoring for sure. More power play opportunities helps but it’s not the whole story.

  105. SwedishPoster says:

    Truth: Would Hall for Larsson be a fair trade today?I don’t think NJD would do that in 100 years.

    Would they take Larsson + Pulju or Yamo? I don’t think that’s a sure thing.

    I wouldn’t trade Larsson back for Hall. Imo Larsson was way more of a positive for his team last season than Hall. This season Hall has looked great on a rolling Devils team and Larsson has had some lesser games on a struggling Oilers team though his last few he’s ramped it up imo. Maybe Hall outplays Larsson this season early results certainly suggests this though it’s early ofc bur imo the players are fairly even in what their net positive for the team is. Though I’d bet on Larsson for longevity

    Look I’m sure I’m pretty lonely with this opinion and since a defense first D man and a scoring winger lacking defense is pretty much as far apart as two skaters come they are pretty much impossible to compare in fair way. I think both are great players though one does the sexy work very well and one does the unsexy work very well.

    I rank D who does the defense part excellent without killing offense high, and while I really like Halls offensive ability, his elite puck carrying, he’s probably top 3 in the league at getting the puck through the neutral zone and into the good end, and so far this season it looks like he’s fully embraced that he’s a passer primarily and not a shooter, so I like his offensive tools but I think is defensive awareness is lacking and it costs his team, not so much it makes him a burden, but it deducts from his overall ability as a player enough that I prefer Larsson going forward, because I think Larsson is a great player in his own right, not because I think Hall is bad.

    Also like to add that I in no way think scoring winger holds low value, Oilers could really use one right now but when compared to players who aren’t at the tail end of offensive plays they can look a bit shinier than they are.

    To answer your question. No, I don’t think Devils would take Larsson back for Hall. And I don’t think they should. They need Hall as their offensive star. But I don’t think Oilers should trade Hall back either. They already have two offensive stars who I think are better than Hall and need Larsson to solidify the D more. Oilers need a scoring winger but the player doesn’t have to be at Hall’s level and price tag at this point and not at the cost of Larsson who I think is a crucial piece going forward.

    I don’t expect you or anyone to agree with me and I realize it’s against what most hockey people think which is fair enough, I could very well be off on this. It’s just the way I see it.

  106. SwedishPoster says:

    Man that was a messy post. No time to edit, have to go to sleep.

  107. Dustylegnd says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    are those scoring rates all situations or just 5 x 5/60 ?

    Seems to me he can split them up 5×5 try Leon with Nuge and Lucic to see if he can drive that line or Move Nuge to C 3 with Stromme and roll teams to death with 3 lines no?

  108. treevojo says:

    Pumped for tonight’s game.

    Hopefully this will be the start of something.

  109. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    –hudson–:
    James Mirtle
    @mirtle
    Hearing that Sunny Mehta, the Devils director of hockey analytics, has left the team. Bright guy with unique background.
    —————
    Any word what’s happening with him?

    I have no idea, but the NHL doesn’t pay well unless you are a player, Head Coach or GM +.

    That’s my first guess.

  110. texmex says:

    No slepy for warm up

  111. who says:

    SwedishPoster: I wouldn’t trade Larsson back for Hall. Imo Larsson was way more of a positive for his team last season than Hall. This season Hall has looked great on a rolling Devils team and Larsson has had some lesser games on a struggling Oilers team though his last few he’s ramped it up imo. Maybe Hall outplays Larsson this season early results certainly suggests this though it’s early ofc bur imo the players are fairly even in what their net positive for the team is. Though I’d bet on Larsson for longevity

    Look I’m sure I’m pretty lonely with this opinion and since a defense first D man and a scoring winger lacking defense is pretty much as far apart as two skaters come they are pretty much impossible to compare in fair way. I think both are great players though one does the sexy work very well and one does the unsexy work very well.

    I rank D who does the defense part excellent without killing offense high, and while I really like Halls offensive ability, his elite puck carrying, he’s probably top 3 in the league at getting the puck through the neutral zone and into the good end, and so far this season it looks like he’s fully embraced that he’s a passer primarily and not a shooter, so I like his offensive tools but I think is defensive awareness is lacking and it costs his team, not so much it makes him a burden, but it deducts from his overall ability as a player enough that I prefer Larsson going forward, because I think Larsson is a great player in his own right, not because I think Hall is bad.

    Also like to add that I in no way think scoring winger holds low value, Oilers could really use one right now but when compared to players who aren’t at the tail end of offensive plays they can look a bit shinier than they are.

    To answer your question. No, I don’t think Devils would take Larsson back for Hall. And I don’t think they should. They need Hall as their offensive star. But I don’t think Oilers should trade Hall back either. They already have two offensive stars who I think are better than Hall and need Larsson to solidify the D more. Oilers need a scoring winger but the player doesn’t have to be at Hall’s level and price tag at this point and not at the cost of Larsson who I think is a crucial piece going forward.

    I don’t expect you or anyone to agree with me and I realize it’s against what most hockey people think which is fair enough, I could very well be off on this. It’s just the way I see it.

    You are not alone.

  112. Yeti says:

    SwedishPoster:
    Man that was a messy post. No time to edit, have to go to sleep.

    We love you no matter how messy your post is (and it wasn’t messy at all).

  113. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    SwedishPoster,

    defense first D man and a scoring winger lacking defense is pretty much as far apart as two skaters come they are pretty much impossible to compare in fair way.

    He was 50%+ GF forever here vs the best in the NHL with Petry + AHLers behind him.

    Why would you say “lacking defence” ?

    He outscored the best with shit help.

    I don’t understand it.

  114. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Dustylegnd:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    are those scoring rates all situations or just 5 x 5/60 ?

    Seems to me he can split them up 5×5 try Leon with Nuge and Lucic to see if he can drive that line or Move Nuge to C 3 with Stromme and roll teams to death with 3 lines no?

    just 5v5

  115. OriginalPouzar says:

    treevojo:
    Pumped for tonight’s game.

    Hopefully this will be the start of something.

    Lets do it!

  116. Lowetide says:

    Well, this is a massive week for the Edmonton Oilers.

  117. Lowetide says:

    Top line owned by Tavares line there. Wow.

  118. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Why so much slack for Caggiula and none for Pulju? Pretty done with the Caggiula experiment

  119. tsg says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    SwedishPoster,

    defense first D man and a scoring winger lacking defense is pretty much as far apart as two skaters come they are pretty much impossible to compare in fair way.

    He was 50%+ GF forever here vs the best in the NHL with Petry + AHLers behind him.

    Why would you say “lacking defence” ?

    He outscored the best with shit help.

    I don’t understand it.

    This is what gets me as well. Narratives get turned into ‘facts’ regardless of the actual results on the ice. It’s especially noticeable for anything related to ‘defense’ for ‘offensive’ players, as true defense is a combination of many factors across all three zones, but often gets simplified down to what happens in front of the net.

  120. Mr. D. says:

    FFS Benning do give the puck away.

  121. leadfarmer says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    SwedishPoster,

    defense first D man and a scoring winger lacking defense is pretty much as far apart as two skaters come they are pretty much impossible to compare in fair way.

    He was 50%+ GF forever here vs the best in the NHL with Petry + AHLers behind him.

    Why would you say “lacking defence” ?

    He outscored the best with shit help.

    I don’t understand it.

    Shit help? Him and his centerman and right winger were for the most part 1/3 of the salary cap. He is a good player and best player on our team for years but let’s not get too carried away

  122. Lowetide says:

    Pakarinen is on glue tonight.

  123. Pink Socks says:

    Is TMac aware that the team is 3-5-1 with 97 and 29 on the same line?

  124. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    Pink Socks:
    Is TMac aware that the team is 3-5-1 with 97 and 29 on the same line?

    I think tmac is more aware of the baron right wing…

  125. OmJo says:

    Barzal.

  126. Pink Socks says:

    Crazy Pedestrian: I think tmac is more aware of the baron right wing…

    Swapping 91 and 29 isn’t going to make the record any worse

  127. fishman says:

    Big PK. Go down one and the misery continues. Talbot huge so far.

  128. OmJo says:

    I think Eberle is trying to hard out there, lol.

  129. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    OmJo:
    Barzal.

    Eberle…

  130. JimmyV1965 says:

    Don’t understand why McDavid is on the PK.

  131. fishman says:

    OmJo,

    Saw him throw a body check!

  132. McSorley33 says:

    Man, does Barzal look bad on the 1st PP unit……oh, wait.

  133. fishman says:

    Really need a PP goal. Lead would be nice.

  134. Pink Socks says:

    Woodcroft should be fired

  135. fishman says:

    Pink Socks:
    Woodcroft should be fired

    In to the sun!

  136. Gerta Rauss says:

    Decent first period

    Talbot with a couple of big saves

  137. JimmyV1965 says:

    I can have the Drake on PP1 or Drai. Hmmm. Tough decision. I’ll go with the Drake. That’s the smart play.

  138. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    Pink Socks:
    Woodcroft should be fired

    Wow does that bring back memories of last year before Letestu dominance…

  139. Lowetide says:

    After one:

    No score
    Shots even 13-13
    Corsi for 5×5 favors NYI: 15-12

  140. OmJo says:

    fishman:
    OmJo,

    Saw him throw a body check!

    Yup, but I meant on the PP, trying to force too many plays IMO, made some bad passes in our end that resulted in the puck going out.

    Not that I’m complaining.

  141. McSorley33 says:

    A team desperate for a win with 2 PP opportunities…….need to cash.

  142. fishman says:

    OmJo,

    Yep beats him getting a hatty!

  143. treevojo says:

    JimmyV1965:
    I can have the Drake on PP1 or Drai.Hmmm. Tough decision. I’ll go with the Drake. That’s the smart play.

    I actually thought drake looked pretty good on the pp.

  144. OmJo says:

    The Islanders coaching version of the Oilers OBC

    o.O

  145. leadfarmer says:

    Pink Socks:
    Woodcroft should be fired

    Most good teams goal is to have their pp ranking + pk ranking be less than 10. We are so far from that that we are on the opposite end of the spectrum. If this continues I don’t see the coaching staff surviving until Christmas

  146. Lowetide says:

    Leon scored

  147. treevojo says:

    The dr

  148. OmJo says:

    DRAISAITL!

  149. JimmyV1965 says:

    Drai scores on first shift with RNH and Lucic. Hilarious.

  150. OmJo says:

    JimmyV1965,

    Right back with McDavid and Maroon.

    #BecauseOilers.

  151. OmJo says:

    EBERLE!

    Oh, wait….

    FACK!

  152. StixMalone says:

    Of course!

  153. OmJo says:

    Barzal has 2 less points than Connor facking McDavid.

  154. StixMalone says:

    Can Strome reciprocate?

  155. OmJo says:

    StixMalone,

    Assisted by Reinhart. Lol.

  156. JimmyV1965 says:

    My mistake. Drai isn’t playing with RNH and Lucic. They just happened to be out together. Still a pretty good idea.

  157. LMHF#1 says:

    Now there’s a kick in the balls.

    Thanks Peter…

  158. StixMalone says:

    JimmyV1965:
    My mistake. Drai isn’t playing with RNH and Lucic. They just happened to be out together. Still a pretty good idea.

    X2

  159. Ribs says:

    Eberle scored. I guess the Oilers must be one of the bad teams now…

  160. jake70 says:

    Barzal kid got some skill

  161. StixMalone says:

    jake70:
    Barzal kid got some skill

    This year he’s got some for sure. But he will regress according to Bob Green

  162. fishman says:

    Both teams playing hard. Entertaining game. Go Oil!

  163. StixMalone says:

    See if the PK improved

  164. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Rookie Barzal has a veteran mentor in Eberle.

    Nice nice nice. This is ok

  165. D says:

    jake70:
    Barzal kid got some skill

    True. But Griffin Reinhart has been playing lights out for the Oilers tonight.

  166. OmJo says:

    Tavares broke Gryba’s ankles or tripped him? Damn.

  167. StixMalone says:

    Only way Chia redeems himself if he trades Auvitu for Tavares…….

  168. fishman says:

    OmJo,

    Free Dylan Simpson!

  169. D says:

    Holy! Did the Oilers just kill off two penalties in the same game?

  170. Pouzar says:

    D:
    Holy!Did the Oilers just kill off two penalties in the same game?

    PK ranked 6th on the road apparently.

  171. D says:

    Pouzar: PK ranked 6th on the road apparently.

    I’ll take it, I guess…

  172. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    D:
    Holy!Did the Oilers just kill off two penalties in the same game?

    Don’t worry man, it’s still early. they can still disappoint us!

  173. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Pouzar: PK ranked 6th on the road apparently.

    45th at home

  174. Visually better says:

    Unwatchable

  175. D says:

    Crazy Pedestrian: Don’t worry man, it’s still early. they can still disappoint us!

    Most definitely. Still got the third period to go!

  176. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Feels a lot like a more entertaining 14-15 season. No thoughts about winning, some goaltending ass clench, wish there was better depth

  177. treevojo says:

    Nurse is the best oiler tonight.

  178. StixMalone says:

    Bad call

  179. StixMalone says:

    My bro Malone….

  180. russ99 says:

    Malone, boy that was some nice effort on the PK.

    Pretty glaring that it’s missing from most of the rest of the roster.

  181. Lowetide says:

    After two:

    1-1 tie

    Shots 24-22 (NYI edge 11-9 in the second)

    Corsi for 5×5 33-25 NYI (Islanders 18-13 edge in that period

  182. Mr. D. says:

    Not enough movement in the red zone. Pretty much statuesque.

  183. Ryan says:

    Who’s this Barzal kid?

  184. Pouzar says:

    Pak Sucks
    SAK Sucks
    JJ Sucks

    Call up the Joe G and Joey Leggs and make them a line with Malone.

  185. OmJo says:

    Just watched the Islanders feeds’ intermission. Not sure about the first one, but absolutely no analysis/coverage of the period. A brief interview with Eberle, then they had a top 10 goals highlight reel for the remainder of the intermission.

    Lmao.

  186. oscarmike says:

    I am so happy I don’t live in Edmonton.
    Thanks Edmontonians for helping a billionaire pay for a shiny new toy for a team that can’t win 🙂

  187. TheVengeFulOne says:

    Why do former oilers score every time?

    Who foresaw Barzal being better than Reinhart? Literally everybody.

  188. OmJo says:

    TheVengeFulOne,

    The curse is real.

  189. Dicky94 says:

    Kassian is going to get one yet playing with Nuge.

  190. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    TheVengeFulOne:
    Why do former oilers score every time?

    Who foresaw Barzal being better than Reinhart? Literally everybody.

    Literally…

  191. OmJo says:

    Pouliot has 5 goals on the season now.

    Good player, that guy. Too bad TMac didn’t like him.

  192. OmJo says:

    Crazy Pedestrian,

    Not Chiarelli so literally not literally everybody.

  193. Munny says:

    TheVengeFulOne:
    Why do former oilers score every time?

    Who foresaw Barzal being better than Reinhart? Literally everybody.

    Explain to me please what Barzal has to do with Reinhart?

  194. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    8 min gone in the 3rd… no shots…

  195. Lowetide says:

    Caggiula out means more Pakarinen but should mean more McDavid.

  196. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    Tmac getting out coached again…

  197. Munny says:

    Thank Gord for puck dustin’

  198. OmJo says:

    Watching Barzal literally makes me sad…

  199. Lowetide says:

    Strike that, Pakarinen just blocked a shot. Good job.

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